Crumpet-style pancakes with peanut filling and caramel coconut sauce (gluten-free; dairy-free; vegan)

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Wedges of pancakes topped with banana, coconut and caramel sauce. Image: Kathryn Hawkins

Hello again. I hope you are well. It’s nearly Shrove Tuesday or Pancake Day if you prefer. I often make pancakes, and at this time of year there is another excuse to make some more. I decided to venture into new territory this time, and have combined a plain pancake batter with a yeasted tea-time favourite, the crumpet. Very easy to make, you just need to get organised and make the batter up the day before so that the yeast can work away overnight in the fridge. I wish I could have come up with a more witty name for them but neither “pan-pet” nor “crump-cake” really did it for me ūüôā

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Crumpet-pancake wedges. Image: Kathryn Hawkins

I used a chopped salted peanut and sugar mix to fill the pancake, but you can add whatever you fancy. Chopped chocolate and coconut would work well, or even small berry fruits and a little jam. I have also included a recipe for a caramel coconut sauce which you may want to try. Otherwise a chocolate or fruit sauce would be an equally delicious choice to serve with your pancake.

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Chopped salted roast peanuts and sugar. Image: Kathryn Hawkins

Time for the recipe. Just remember that you need to make the batter the day before you want to serve the pancakes.

Makes: 4 wedges

Ingredients

  • 125g gluten-free self raising flour
  • ¬Ĺ tsp xanthan gum (I add this to give a more chewy texture; the pancake will be softer without it)
  • 1 tsp fast-action dried yeast (This is the yeast that requires no activation and is added to the dry ingredients before liquid is added.
  • 4 tbsp caster sugar
  • 250ml dairy-free milk (I use oat milk)
  • 1 flax egg (1 tbsp ground flax seeds mixed with 3 tbsp cold water)
  • 1 tbsp vegetable oil plus extra for frying
  • 75g chopped salted roasted peanuts + extra to serve

For the caramel coconut sauce:

  • 50g golden syrup
  • 50g light brown sugar
  • 20g dairy-free margarine
  • 90ml coconut milk (If you don’t want the coconut flavour, use a dairy-free pouring cream instead)
  • ¬Ĺ tsp salt or 1 tsp vanilla extract

1. Sift the flour and xanthan gum into a bowl. Stir in the yeast and 2 tbsp sugar. Make a well in the centre and gradually blend in the milk, flax egg and 1 tbsp oil to make smooth, thick batter. Cover with film and put in the fridge overnight.

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Making the batter. Images: Kathryn Hawkins

2. The next day, remove the batter from the fridge and let it stand at room temperature for about an hour or until bubbles form on the surface.

3. Brush a 25cm base diameter frying pan lightly with a little oil and heat until hot. Stir the batter and then pour it into the hot pan. Reduce the heat to medium/low, spread the batter to the edge of the pan and a little up the sides, and cook gently for 6-7 minutes until bubbles appear and the top begins to set.

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Cooking the batter. Images: Kathryn Hawkins

4. Mix the peanuts with the remaining sugar and sprinkle over one half of the batter. Cover with a lid and cook for a further 5 minutes until the pancake is completely set and the bottom is crisp and richly golden.

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Filling and final cooking. Images: Kathryn Hawkins

5. Carefully flip the plain side of the pancake over the peanuts and slide on to a board. Slice into 4 wedges and serve while still warm with your chosen toppings and sauces. I served mine with sliced banana, toasted coconut flakes and extra chopped peanuts.

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Folded and ready to serve. Image: Kathryn Hawkins

If you fancy making your own caramel coconut sauce to go with the pancake. Put all the ingredients into a small saucepan. Heat gently, stirring, until everything has melted together, then raise the heat and simmer for 4-5 minutes until thick and slightly caramelised. Leave to cool. The sauce will thicken as it cools. Serve hot or cold, flavoured with salt or vanilla.

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Making caramel coconut sauce. Images: Kathryn Hawkins
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Salty-sweet, nutty and delicious. Image: Kathryn Hawkins

I hope you have a good few days ahead, and enjoy making and eating pancakes. Until then, take care and keep safe.

Caramel “splatter” blondies (gluten-free)

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Gluten free caramel “splatter” blondies. Image copyright: Kathryn Hawkins

With the weekend approaching, I thought a baking recipe might go down well today. One of my “turn to” bakes for entertaining¬†is sweet and gooey blondies – a guaranteed winner. Very easy to make, quick to cook, and a bake that improves on keeping (although it doesn’t usually hang around long enough¬†to test this theory to the full!). Here’s the recipe:

Makes 24 pieces

  • 200g good quality white chocolate
  • 115g salted butter
  • 3 medium eggs
  • 115g light soft brown sugar
  • 225g gluten free plain flour blend (such as Dove’s Farm)
  • 1¬Ĺ tsp gluten free baking powder
  • 1-2 tsp caramel or butterscotch flavour (such as Dr Oetker Caramel Flavour or Beau Concentrated Butterscotch Flavour)
  • 150g white chocolate chunks
  • 300g your favourite caramel sauce or canned caramel
  1. Preheat the oven to 170¬įC (150¬įC fan oven, gas mark 3). Grease and line a 20 x 30cm¬†rectangular cake tin. Break up 150g white chocolate into a heatproof bowl and add the butter. Sit the bowl over a saucepan of barely simmering water and leave to melt. Remove from the water and cool for 10 minutes.
  2. Beat the eggs and sugar into the melted chocolate mixture. Stir in the flour and baking powder, and add flavour to taste; then stir in the chocolate chunks.
  3. Transfer to the prepared tin and smooth over the top. Bake in the oven until risen, lightly golden and lightly crusted on top (for about 25 minutes if you want a very dense centre, or for 30 minutes for a more even and spongier texture Рthis is my preference).
  4. Whilst the cake is warm, score the top with a knife to make 24 equal pieces and then, using a wooden spoon handle, push the end into each portion of cake to make a deep indent Рtry to avoid pushing the handle right through to the bottom of the tin. Leave to cool completely in the tin.
  5.  Once the cake is cold, remove from the tin and wrap and store for 24 hours to allow the flavour to develop and the texture to moisten.

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    “Just filled” blondie pieces. Image copyright: Kathryn Hawkins
  6. The next day, unwrap the cake and cut through into the 24 pieces. Depending on your caramel sauce preference, either squirt  it straight from the tube; spoon it, or, transfer it to a piping bag and pipe sufficient caramel into each pocket to fill it.
  7. Melt the reserved white chocolate as above and, using a teaspoon, drizzle liberally over the top of each blondie. Leave in a cool plate to set, or until you are ready to indulge. Yummy!

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Caramel “splatter” blondies. Image copyright: Kathryn Hawkins